Arguments in NZ about the right mixture of government tax and spending initiatives have focused mainly on whether such measures might stimulate the economy. Among the major themes of the recent budget were the alleged need to address the 'undue tax burden' on high income earners and the implication that to widen and strengthen the tax net would deter investors. Instead, public sector austerity is to be the favoured path to revitalising the economy. While opponents have asserted that the opposite tack might provide even greater stimulation, there has been little analysis of this approach in terms of fundamental 'tax philosophy' and implications for social justice.
The second Economics for Everyone seminar with Jim Stanford was attended by a lively crowd of about 100 on Tuesday 22nd June.